Today was my last day in my old apartment. I had moved everything out and cleaned it thoroughly for the new tenant, but there was one last thing I felt i needed to do, a closing ritual to say goodbye. This place carried so much love, and supported me in so many ways, I wanted to be sure I took all of that good energy with me to my new space. I brought over my favorite candle and chose 5 gemstones from my collection to hold the energies. I lit my candle and briefly said a prayer, calling in all of my angels and guides of 100% pure light. I then called back any parts of my spirit that may have been attached to the new place, as well as the spirits of my ancestors and all the good energy there that was mine and asked that it come with me to my new home. Finally I played the Long Time Sun song to help ensure a harmonious space for whomever calls the space home after me. I said a thank you prayer and left with my stones and candle.
Once “home” to my new abode, I laid my stones out and once again lit my candle, asking in prayer for the release of all of the goodness into the new space, creating a happy home life within the new walls.
There are many ways to create a sacred space, and many rituals one can perform to close the door on one era of your life and usher in the new. This was very personal for me and so I just did what I felt my intuition called me to do, which turned out to be very simple but felt right and effective. The method may be different for you. If you have to change spaces for any reason, know you can ask your inner divine for help and the perfect process will present itself to you.
Here’s to new beginnings and infinite possibilities!
To say this past week has been intense and emotional would be an understatement. I can’t say I handled it constructively 100% of the time, but I do have some tools in my spiritual toolbox that are healthier than others. When suppressed, anger and frustration can build up in our bodies and cause resentment, or even show up as physical dis-ease if left unchecked for long enough.
My favorite ways to get them out are through doing something physical like dance, exercise or taking my trusty plastic bat and beating the crap out of a cushion or my mattress. I learned this technique at a yoga workshop and boy, does it work. I usually wear myself out in less than a minute and it’s enough to create some space from the emotion and begin to think more clearly and calmly.
If this post resonated with you at all, I encourage you to pick up one of these from the kid’s toy section of your local department store so that you’ll be prepared to deal with the anger monster next time you find yourself seeing red. It’s incredibly cathartic and is the fastest way I know to channel that negative energy. Just please don’t beat on anything that’s not a couch cushion or your mattress! This is supposed to be constructive, not destructive! 🙂
But if you put on some Bob Marley and place a stick of champa in your favorite plant, you’ll have those dishes packed in no time. 🙂
Daikon as radish is a cruciferous vegetable with numerous health benefits including cancer prevention, weight loss and relieving menstrual cramps. It is commonly served raw, particularly in Japanese cuisine. Today I wanted to share a tasty way to prepare this, in a method I adapted from Alicia Silverstone in her book, The Kind Diet. This method takes out the pungent, spicy flavor and leaves a sweeter taste, with a consistency similar to that of baked apples.
You will need the following and should be able to find them all at your local health food store or international market:
1 daikon radish (I used a half to fit it in one pan)
1/4 cup Mirin Rice Cooking Wine
2 Tbsp Shoyu
Peel the daikon as you would a carrot and slice into 3/4 inch slices. Place in the pan with just enough water to almost cover them:
Add the Mirin and Shoyu. I added a bay leaf to help with digestion, but this step is not necessary.
Simmer over med-low, covered, for 45 minutes. Then remove the cover and simmer for another 30-45 minutes until all the liquid is absorbed:
These can be served as a side dish, or you can eat them all by themselves as a mono meal. Aren’t they pretty???
These are supposed to be eaten shortly after cooking, but sometimes I store them in the fridge and serve one or two with meals that contain a higher fat content. I find it helps my body break down the food better and keep me feeling light in my tummy. If you do this, it is best to use them within 3 days.
This morning I was feeling upset over something and wasn’t sure how I could improve my state of mind. Whenever this happens, I find it’s best to get out into nature and the answer usually comes to me. I have a favorite spot, hidden in the woods that surround my apartment complex, where I like to go when I need to hide away from the world. I sat down on my favorite rock and already I could feel the grounding energy, the strength of the stone, as if I was absorbing it via osmosis.
I noticed a cluster of small rocks that almost formed a circle. I was compelled to arrange them into a circle, and then I sat right in the center, in the dirt. I had my iphone with me, so I put in my headphone and played some beautiful music, allowing my little stone fortress to shield me while Mother Earth absorbed my tears and my worries.
The soil was a rich, deep black and the texture was soft and almost silky. I had read that a natural bacteria in soil acts as an antidepressant so I decided to grab big handfuls and just play. I squeezed the soil and made little mud-shapes until my hands became really dirty:
I sat there until a deep sense of peace washed over me, and I no longer felt the urge to cry. I was amazed at how it had been completely taken away. I felt incredibly in tune with the earth’s energy, and felt as if I had been guided to do these simple actions to heal my spirit. One of the stones from my circle seemed to call out to me, so I held it for a few minutes and meditated. I frequently meditate with crystals to obtain a deep meditative state and was almost shocked to discover how this ordinary rock took only seconds to deeply connect me to Divinity. I decided it had to come home with me. 🙂
The moral of this story is that Mother Earth speaks to us clearly if we will take the time to listen and not let the ego or the rational mind get in the way. She wants to heal us, to unburden our hearts and help us find connectivity and peace. Next time you feel sad or ungrounded, go find a patch of grass to sit on–a secluded one if possible, free of distractions–and see what comes up for you.
Love and blessings,
- 1 cup cooked basmati rice
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1/2 cup cashews (soaked for at least 2 hours for easy digestion)
- Handful of raisins (soaking optional)
- 1 1/2 tbsp butter or ghee (or coconut oil for vegans)
- 1/4 tsp black mustard seeds
- 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- Juice of one small lemon
- Agave nectar to taste
This is an Ayurvedic recipe which also happens to be gluten-free! Yay! In a true Ayurvedic recipe, one would simmer the spices for a long time in ghee but I prefer speedy cooking. For this same reason, I keep cooked rice in the fridge so I can pull some out and make a quick one-pot meal on the fly.
I toasted the mustard and cumin seeds in a pan over medium heat until they began to pop. (Remember to stir often to prevent burning.) In another pot I added all of the other ingredients except the lemon and agave and mixed them together. Yes, my peas were still frozen! I had to add a little splash of water since my rice was refrigerated, but if you are making yours fresh, the water is not necessary. Add the seeds to the rice mixture when they are done and stir until heated through. Finally, drizzle with the lemon juice and agave to your liking. (I used the juice of a whole lemon and it was too sour, so I recommend starting with half and taste-testing to perfection!)
This recipe uses sweet and sour tastes, as well as cumin, which are all very beneficial for those with the vata dosha. Soaking nuts and dried fruit makes it possible for those with weak digestion to eat these items without bloating or digestive upset.
The above is an excerpt from a quote by Mooji, a wise guru from Jamaica. I keep these words as my background on my phone and it’s really cool how many times a day I will find myself going to do something that involves explaining or complaining.
Explaining takes us out of the peace of the present moment, and is usually our attempt to verbally rationalize an action prompted by our ego (likely a fear based action, too) instead of our higher/inner self.
Complaining is just plain negative, and is giving away our attention to those things that we do not want in our lives. Why would we give away our energy to those things when we could use our minds to focus on what is going right in our lives, as opposed to going wrong? It certainly feels better. One of my favorite books is Happy For No Reason by Marci Shimoff. In this book, she notes that complaining and blaming are “happiness robbers.” This could not be more true. Griping about something or someone is not exactly an act of joy. We all know people who like to “bitch and moan” and I think we can all agree they are not the bouncy, smiley personalities that we associate with happy people. In fact, we often try to avoid those people because they bring us down!
Shimoff also suggests that we take note of how our body, especially our heart center, feels when we experience thoughts. She points out that positive thoughts make us feel expansive, light, and happy. Negative thoughts make us feel closed, contracted, tense. The Institute of HeartMath has confirmed that the heart’s electromagnetic field is unquestionably affected in this way, so we want to look for those thoughts that “expand” us and avoid those that “contract” us. Play around with this. Focus on the center of your body, around the solar plexus and your heart center and see how you feel as you experience different emotional reactions to thought.
In my spiritual research and my quest for self-awareness, it is becoming clear that the single most important thing in life is to maintain a positive mindset. Nothing is going to make us happy–we have to find happiness and then do what it takes to stay there to draw in our highest good. It affects everything from our health, to the amount of money we can make, even to our life-expectancy. One of the easiest ways I have found to do this is through gratitude. Even the seemingly “bad” things that happen to us always come with a blessing if we have eyes to see it. I go through every day now looking for things to appreciate, no matter how small, and i verbalize these every chance I get. It feels fantastic, and I feel good about where I am giving my energy and attention and how that is affecting my body.
Thank you for reading this. May your day be full of things to be grateful for,